Orders Charter (enforcer) to not Enforce the Charter
Dave Bing has reportedly issued a letter instructing his corporation counsel to cease a lawsuit constructed to comply with the city charter and recent legislation from the city council. This is unethical by the mayor and possible grounds for his removal from office. This also exposes the lack of managerial skills by the mayor. Bing’s use of a private law firm to represent city business shows a lack of respect for the office and the city. His use of a private law firm, Miller-Canfield to consult on the drafting of the consent agreement, led to the position where we exist today. The consent agreement violates the city charter. Both the city’s corporation counsel and the council’s analyst have issued opinions stating the likely violations.
Where does Bing get the money to hire outside lawyers? Hiring contractors usually involves issuing a contract and the city council voting to approve. How is Bing able to bring in outside lawyers and not follow this charter mandated process. If Detroit is on the verge of bankruptcy, why would Bing hire lawyers and put the city further at risk?
The ethics department is also mandated to report on unethical actions by Bing and his appointees. Do the actions of the mayor suggest that he would order all executive branch persons to comply with his instructions regardless of the charter? The ethics board needs to investigate the mayors actions.
Another charter mandated position, the Inspector General position sits vacant. Why has the city council not conducted the process of obtaining a person to fill this role. Had this role been filled this office would also have to investigate the actions by the mayor, some of his appointees and perhaps even council. A charter where everyone investigates everyone is what we have now. Like Crittendon who warrned the charter commission of these problems, Hood Research stated that with the language and manipulation of powers the end result would be what we have today.
Are any of the charter commissioners getting criticized?